These Long Beach restaurants have reopened or are reopening soon

Editor’s note: This is an “open” article, meaning it will be updated with restaurant reopenings as we receive them. If you are a restaurateur and wish to have your reopening listed, send a picture, what date you will be opening and your hours of operations to: [email protected]

As Long Beach and the rest of the country are slowly beginning to reopen, restaurateurs are beginning to reconfigure their dining spaces to accommodate the rules attached to reopening, which means diners may finally enjoy a meal at a table inside, or outside, their favorite restaurants once again.

Here are the timeframes and hours of operation for restaurants opening across the city.

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Courtesy of The 908 Restaurant.

The 908

3850 Worsham Ave., #410; 562-420-5331

Sunday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Monday through Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Brunch on Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The 908 is a locally-owned mid-level dining spot that separates itself not only literally from Long Beach Exchange’s massively popular food hall, The Hangar—The 908 is its own space a few steps away from The Hangar—but it also offers an elevated deviation away from the more casual offerings that are offered in the food hall.

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Ahimsa's popular vegan burger with fries. Courtesy of Ahimsa.

Ahimsa’s popular vegan burger with fries. Courtesy of Ahimsa.

Ahimsa

340 E. 4th St.; 562-435-7113

Daily: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

Once home to one of the original vegan spaces in Long Beach known as Zephyr, Ahimsa was a welcomed addition to the vegan scene not only because it outshone its predecessor—by miles, I might add—but returned vegan food to Long Beach at a time when it seemed it might never survive.

While you’ll find the typical wheat-and-soy mock meats that are ubiquitous amongst vegan joints, what stands out most in Ahimsa’s food is when they steer clear of trying to cater to mock meat crowds. Surely, their Ahimsa Burger is great but not because it attempts to create a patty that tastes like beef. It’s great because it’s a house-made patty that doesn’t taste like meat.

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Three different tacos sit in individual paper trays.

A trio of tacos, with the fiery soyrizo sitting center, from Amorcito. Photo by Brian Addison.

Amorcito

4150 McGowen St.; 562-420-5005

Daily: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Chef Thomas Ortega closed all of his Amor Familia locations, including its two Long Beach locations—Playa Amor and Amorcito—when COVID hit. Shortly thereafter, Ortega announced he was reopening those two spots for delivery.

One of Long Beach’s best spots for tacos (if not the best), patrons are sure to enjoy Ortega’s masterful creations stuffed inside the equally masterful tortillas created by Maria Barraza.

For Brian Addison’s review of Amorcito, click here. To look at Amorcito’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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The Auld Dubliner in Downtown Long Beach. Photo by Brian Addison.

The Auld Dubliner

71 S. Pine Ave.; 562-437-8300

Monday through Friday: 4 p.m. to midnight; Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to midnight

Most places in America that call themselves “Irish pubs” follow a pretty standard recipe: give it some name with an “O” or a “Mc,” throw some flatscreen TVs on the walls, get a menu of fried foods and make sure there’s a touch of wood paneling to tie the room together. And more often than not, the kitschy shamrocks on the walls and on-tap Guinness do little to harken back to the actual pubs in Ireland, which have live Irish music going for hours a day, feature Irish whiskeys beyond the basic Jameson and load their menu with pub-fare specialties like bangers and mash.

But unlike this version of the many other Irish pubs throughout the Southland, Auld Dubliner owner David Copley and his crew continually return to Ireland to explore its expanding food scene, ever-changing spaces and culture in order to keep the Auld Dubliner simultaneously contemporary and classic. Even better, he brings a handful of Auld Dub’s patrons with him to learn about Ireland and the meaning behind a pub.

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Ballast Point Brewery

110 N. Marina Dr.; 562-296-4470

Opening June 10.

Let’s be honest: One doesn’t really go to Ballast Point for the food. They go for what still remain stellar beers—despite its tumultuous ownership history—and the equally stellar views of Alamitos Bay and the Pacific Ocean from it’s double-decker patio.

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Thai tea-brined fried chicken sandwich. Photo by Brian Addison

The Bamboo Club

3522 E. Anaheim St.; 562-343-2534

Friday and Saturday: 5 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.; Sunday: 3 to 11 p.m.

Long Beach’s solely dedicated tiki bar officially reopened June 5—and with it, not only brings its famed, boozey tiki cocktails but also some of the city’s best bar food, like their famed fried chicken sandwich.

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Belmont Brewing Company

25 39th Place, #410; 562-433-3891

Monday through Friday: 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m; Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Belmont Brewing Company in Belmont Shore came online in 1990, giving it the distinction of being the oldest extant brewpub in the greater Los Angeles area, closing in on a quarter century. Founders David Lott and David Hansen opened their pub right on the beachfront, with a spacious patio overlooking the ocean and the Long Beach skyline, the ultimate brew-with-a-view location for drinking fresh, local, independent beer.

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The Beadel Burger from Breakfast Bar. Photo by Brian Addison.

The Breakfast Bar

70 Atlantic Ave.; 562-726-1700

Monday through Thursday: 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Friday through Sunday: 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.

It’s been called one of the best brunch spots in the nation by Yelp! and, shortly before the pandemic, owners Pamela and Joshua Beadel announced they would be opening a second location in Belmont Heights. During the pandemic, they assisted the World Central Kitchen in providing daily meals to seniors across the city.

Their original location is up and running again, and you can once again score their Hangover fries slathered in gravy and sausage while sipping on a breakfast margarita—though, I would suggest trying their mai tai.

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The open-air bar at The Carvery. Courtesy of The Carvery.

The Carvery

201 Pine Ave.; 562-317-5237

Opening June 12. 

The Downtown restaurant that sits in the heart of Pine Avenue comes from the owners of its nearby-and-beloved dive heaven Shannon’s. With an art deco-meeets-industrial interior, enjoy the expansive bar that seamlessly melds with their patio while people-watching on one of Long Beach’s most known stretches of road.

For Brian Addison’s review of The Carvery, click here

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The tallarines verdes at Casa Chaskis. Photo by Brian Addison.

Casa Chaskis

2380 Santa Fe Ave.; 562-612-3305

Monday through Saturday: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday: Noon to 8 p.m.

The Westside’s Casa Chaskis, headed by Chef Agustin Romo, was birthed out of Instagram: he began delivering plates of tallarines verdes—strands of pasta lathered in creamy pesto that, if paired with chicken, creates remarkable chicken pesto—and empanadas—buttery pockets of pastry stuffed with a tangy ground beef mixture—to those who’d place orders on his social media account. Saving penny by penny, Romo opened his brick-and-mortar on the Westside and now serves up some of the best Peruvian food in the city.

To look at Casa Chaski’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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The pastrami sandwich from Derrick’s on Atlantic.

Derrick’s on Atlantic

3502 Atlantic Ave.; 562-337-8131

Daily: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Derrick’s just opened right before the COVID pandemic—and it has already built up its name as a solid barbecue choice, joining the underrated gems that are Corner 10th and Beach City Deli but with a bit more elevation to its game—think coho salmon and heirloom carrots joining ‘que basics like brisket and mac’n’cheese.

Soon, their parking lot will be covered with tents so you can enjoy the smokey meats al fresco.

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Pizza from DiPiazza’s. Photo by Steve Guillen.

DiPiazza

5205 E. Pacific Coast Hwy.; 562-498-2461

Monday through Wednesday: 3 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Thursday through Saturday 11 to 2 a.m.; Sunday: 11 a.m to midnight

Newly minted owner Steve Guillen has had to take on a three-front battle: Walking away from his neighborhood staple Iguana Kelly’s, taking over DiPiazza after its two much-loved founders decided to retire, and now, reopening after the pandemic.

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Dutch’s Brewhouse in Bixby Knolls. Courtesy of Yelp!/Antonette N.

Dutch’s Brewhouse

4244 Atlantic Ave.; 562-420-5005

Tuesday through Thursday: 5 to 9 p.m.; Friday: 4 to 9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 2 to 9 p.m.

Owner Jason Van Fleet—the self-described Chief Bottle Washer—and his vastly underrated Bixby Knolls gem now have an even greater reason to visit beyond the stellar beer and pies: The Allery, an alley/artspace that is used for Bixby Knolls’ First Friday Art Walks, is now a temporary dining space for Dutch’s. Respect social distancing and respect the pizza skills.

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Courtesy of Yelp!/Garen A.

EJ’s Pub

4306 Atlantic Ave.; 562-424-5000

Tuesday through Thursday: Noon to 6 p.m.; Friday: 1 to 8 p.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

EJ Malloy’s has been through rough times: It was 2018 when the original location shuttered its space after serving Belmont Heights for three decades. The Irish-meets-American sports pub first opened in 1992 after it replaced another bar that was around for several decades, Karl’s Little Bavaria, a long-forgotten pub of the past along the eastern edge of the Broadway corridor. (The owners of Karl’s eventually moved into Naples with Anneliese’s Bavarian Inn.)

Then, just weeks ago, they shuttered their Los Altos location as well, leaving the Bixby Knolls pub to be the sole place to enjoy their famed gorgonzola fries and wings.

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The Italian sub (front) with the pastrami sandwich from Ellie’s Deli. Photo by Brian Addison.

Ellie’s Deli

204 Orange Ave.; 562-437-4837

Opening in July

Ellie’s, the restaurant which topped my best restaurants list last year, will move to a new home in the East Long Beach neighborhood of Zaferia, joining The HideawayPho Hong Phat and other culinary gems.

The original location in Alamitos Beach will become the straight-up, Italian deli Witzl originally envisioned for the tiny space. Dubbed Ellie’s Deli—love that—he has already been serving up to-go versions of what he hopes to offer within the space: Italian subs, pizzas, meatball sandwiches…

For Brian Addison’s piece on Ellie’s moving to a new location and the concept behind the deli, click here.

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The Firkin’s patio. Courtesy of The Firkin.

The Firkin Pub & Grill

3411 E. Broadway; 562-433-3769

Monday through Friday: Noon to 9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Having taking over what used to be E.J. Malloy’s, The Firkin offers 900 square feet of dog-friendly patio space as well as alternating dining room tables.

“We have our full menu available, as well as 25 beers on tap and family and estate wine selection,” said owner Mia Cornelius. “The pub will stay open an extra hour after kitchen closing.”

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Margaritas at Fuego inside Hotel Maya. Photo by Mona Shadia.

Fuego

700 Queensway Dr.; 562-481-3910

Opening June 12. Friday: 4 to 9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Friday, June 12 from 4-9 p.m., and Saturday, June 13 and Sunday, June 14 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Much like its easterly counterpart mentioned above, Tantalūm, Fuego at Hotel Maya—a space that I have called one of the places to escape the city without leaving the city—has unparalleled views of Downtown Long Beach from its north-facing shore.

On top that, house margaritas are six bucks during happy hour—and don’t think these margaritas are light pours. Much like Los Compadres, they’re heavy on the tequila and balanced out with house made sweet’n’sour that parallels some of the best in the city.

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The Good Bar owner Blake Whytock stands in his business as hundreds of skateboards hang on the wall in Long Beach Monday, April 27, 2020. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

The Good Bar & Eatery

3316 E. 7th St.; 562-433-6282

Opening June 12. Friday: 4 p.m. to midnight; Saturday: 2 p.m. to midnight

Blake Whytock, owner of The Good Bar, is a pretty energetic guy, the kind of guy who, four days after signing the lease to take over what used to be the Bull Bar, at Seventh and Redondo, opened up The Good Bar and Eatery, five years ago.

Catering to vegans and vegetarians alike with chili cheese tots and other comfort foods, the Good Bar’s crowds of skaters, local winos and hungry veggie lovers created an immediate and sustained success the space had never really witnessed before.

Even better? During the pandemic, he used the time he was forced to shutter up shop to fix up some things around the space—and used his employees to help him do so they could avoid unemployment.

For Brian Addison’s profile on The Good Bar, click here.

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The lamb tartare from The Hideaway. Photo by Brian Addison.

The Hideaway

4127 E. Anaheim St.; 562-343-5630

Opening June 10. Wednesday through Sunday: 3 to 9 p.m

The Hideaway is Chef Arthur Gonzalez’s ode to the American steakhouse, with nods toward the mid-century modern style that made Palm Springs a prime destination for such meat-centric offerings.

This is simply one of my favorite new restaurants in the city. Having been closed since COVID restrictions were put in place, I cannot wait to sink my teeth into Gonzalez’s Californian menu—especially the stellar lamb tartare, where raw bits of Niman Ranch lamb are lightly brushed with bits of mustard and topped with a quail yolk.

For Brian Addison’s review of The Hideaway, click here.

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There was little exterior damage visible from the fire, which started in the kitchen of Hof's Hut, authorities said. Photo by Jeremiah Dobruck.

Hof’s Hut in Long Beach. Photo by Jeremiah Dobruck.

Hof’s Hut

2147 N. Bellflower Blvd.; 562-597-5811

Sunday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

A SoCal institution that has slowly seen its presence shrunk as the group that owns it focuses on the more contemporary chains its owns like Lucille’s, the Long Beach location still makes pies and cakes on the daily while offering diner fare.

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Komos05

A large flour tortilla tostada from Komo’s. Photo by Annie Merkley.

Komo’s Cocina

5730 E. 2nd St.; 562-856-9494

Thursday through Sunday: 4 to 8 p.m.

This Naples restaurant offers hyper-American interpretations of Mexican cuisine, where giant flour tortillas are fried to create a carb-bowl filled with tons of meat, shredded lettuce, douses of cheese and huge dollops of sour cream.

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An assortment of tacos de guisado at La Chancla. Photo by Brian Addison.

La Chancla Mexican Grill

990 Cherry Ave., #102; 562-248-2741

Sunday through Thursday: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Before La Chancla, Long Beach wasn’t a city that catered to the almighty taco de guisado—but this hole-in-the-wall, tucked into a tiny strip mall at the southeast corner of Cherry Avenue and Tenth Street has become that spot. Opening shortly before the COVID pandemic, it has quickly garnered a loyal following.

To see Brian Addison’s piece about La Chancla and the family behind its operations, click here.

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A classic margherita pizza from La Parolaccia. Photo by Brian Addison.

La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana 

2945 E. Broadway; 562-438-1235

Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday: 5 to 9 p.m; Friday and Saturday: 5 to 10 p.m.

Owner Michael Procaccini has always slung some of the city’s best pizzas while also creating pasta dishes that recall his family’s Roman roots. Everything is made in-house, much of it in a giant wood-burning oven imported piece-by-piece from Italy. La Parolaccia is one of the city’s best restaurants and it’s thrilling to see it reopen with their food being presented the way it should always be presented: fresh from the chef’s hands to your table amid the subtle click-and-clatter of forks and conversation.

To look at La Parolaccia’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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The birria—a Lola’s classic—with a slight update on its preparation. Photo by Brian Addison.

Lola’s Mexican Cuisine

2030 E. 4th St.; 562-343-5506 and 4140 Atlantic Ave.; 562-349-0100

Daily: 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Lola’s is as synonymous with Long Beach as The Queen Mary. In the food world, Luis Navarro and Brenda Rivera were the first pair to welcome the city into a new era of dining, one that focused on the community—it is hard to not find Lola’s representing at various philanthropic functions across Long Beach—while also upping the dining the experience, especially for Mexican food.

To look at Lola’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here. To look at Brian Addison’s last review of Lola’s, click here.

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Long Beach Beer Lab

518 W. Willow St.; 562-270-3253

Sunday through Thursday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m; Friday and Saturday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

There is no question that the Long Beach Beer Lab is one of the city’s most underrated culinary gems. Owners-slash-partners-for-life Levi Fried and Harmony Sage have created a wonderfully harmonious blend of food and drink that simultaneously highlight of Fried’s brewing skills and Sage’s masterful work with bread and other foods.

Sage’s pizzas are spectacular, with an extensive list of vegan offerings that are nothing short of impressive as are her delicious oddities like her wonderful blue cheese and walnut pizza. Sandwiches? Wonderful. Soups? Awesome. Her food overall? Underrated and damn tasty, with or without a beer.

To look at the Long Beach Beer Lab’s feature in Brian Addison’s Underrated Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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A macchiato from Lord Windsor. Photo by Brian Addison.

Lord Windsor

1101 E. Third Street.; 562-901-0001

Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Long Beach’s OG local roaster is open—and yes, I know Polly’s has been around forever but I am admittedly being snobby and referring to the U.S.-centric movement of third-wave coffee roasting.

Wade Windsor’s love of coffee—which includes canned cold brew that has a hilarious story about how it got into Costco—is reflected in Lord Windsor’s well-known minimalism as a space that encourages people to hang together. And they can do that again—just a bit further apart.

For Brian Addison’s feature on Lord Windsor, click here

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Pozole from Los Compadres’ location on Pine Avenue. Photo by Brian Addison.

Los Compadres

3229 E. Anaheim St.; 562-961-0061 and 1144 Pine Ave.; 562-432-0061

Sunday through Thursday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Los Compadres is easily one of Long Beach’s most well-known and respected staples. From their handmade tortillas to stellar mariscos, it could be said that Los Compadres helped us appreciate quality Mexican food beyond the trucks and grab-and-go taquerias.

With the Pine Avenue location opening first followed by the Anaheim location this past weekend, Long Beach patrons have full access to all things Los Compadres.

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The view of the interior bar from the patio at Lupe’s. Photo by Brian Addison.

Lupe’s

301 The Promenade N.; 562-436-4344

Opening June 12; Sunday through Wednesday: 5 to 9 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday: 1 to 10:30 p.m.

Chef Jason Witzl of Lupe’s faced a rough week when COVID began to shut down the service industry: having to let go of 80 staff members, he and his team tried to figure out how to best maneuver the food landscape after opening one of the city’s largest restaurant spaces, Lupe’s, in Downtown.

Lupe’s will officially reopen June 12, followed by Ellie’s Deli (above) in July inside the original Ellie’s location, followed by Ellie’s itself later this year in its new space in the Zaferia district.

For Brian Addison’s review of Lupe’s, click here.  For Brian Addison’s piece about the new Ellie’s location and concept behind Ellie’s Deli, click here.

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The tagliatelle bolognese at Michael’s Downtown. Photo by Brian Addison.

Michael’s Downtown

210 E. 3rd St.; 562-491-2100

Daily: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Owner Carl Dene and Chef Giuseppe Musso distinguished themselves as two of the most inventive voices for the restaurant industry during COVID. From designing family meals-to-go to the creation of Giuseppe’s Market, offering bulk produce and grocery items sold at base value. In fact, it is arguable that Giuseppe’s Market launched an entire movement of popup markets during the pandemic that not only stood their ground, but provided critical income to restaurants operating on the edge.

And this past weekend, they opened their doors to diners for the first time since the pandemic hit.

To look at Michael’s Downtown’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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Stuffed rabbit sausage at Michael’s on Naples. Photo by Brian Addison.

Michael’s on Naples

5620 E. 2nd St.; 562-439-7080

Reservations available Friday through Sunday: 5:30 to 10 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday: 5:30 to 9 p.m.

Owner Michael Dene and Managing Partner Massimo Aronne approach during the pandemic restrictions—much like Carl’s work at the Downtown location—has been that of innovation. Selling jars of sauces and catering to families, their partnership made way for even greater results including a collaboration with Ryan Choura of Choura Events and Michael’s Downtown owner Carl Dene (Michael’s son) that hopes to spark a parklet revolution throughout the city.

To look at Michael’s on Naples feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here. For Brian Addison’s original review of Michael’s on Naples from 2014, click here

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Naples Rib Company. Courtesy of Yelp!/Victor M.

Naples Rib Company

5800 E. 2nd St.; 562-439-7427

Opens June 11.

The longtime Naples staple—slowly approaching its 40th year in business after opening in 1984—is not only a place that is synonymous with the wealthy enclave that is the neighborhood of Long Beach but also interconnected with the city’s philanthropic side: There is rarely a school event, charity event, Christmas parade, or do-good fundraiser that Naples Rib Company isn’t a part of.

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The fried deviled eggs at Nick’s. Photo by Brian Addison.

Nick’s on 2nd

4901 E. Second Street; 562-856-9000

Tuesday (June 9): 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Thursday through Sunday: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

I understand criticisms that Nick’s doesn’t challenge much in terms of its food. With a menu that has largely remained unchanged since its opening almost eight years ago, it is as straight-forward as an American restaurant can be: Excellently made steaks, sides like fried deviled eggs that rarely fail and a butter cake dessert which is one of the best in the city. And yes, it could, with a bit more finesse, a bit more focus, as well as a shift in its layout, achieve something like the elegance of Arthur J.

For the folks living in and around Belmont Shore, the consistency isn’t just necessarily in food but in the space’s stability. With a slew of restaurants and businesses shuttering along Second Street, is no wonder that Nick’s remains not only popular and respected, but cherished.

To look at Nick’s on 2nd’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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Noble Bird Rotisserie at 2nd & PCH.

Noble Bird Rotisserie

6460 Pacific Coast Highway, #125; 562-431-0445

Daily: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Two options for this chicken rotisserie kingdom for $40, each of which feed four. Option 1: One whole rotisserie chicken; any two sides; half baguette; Brownie Bark. Option 2: Half a rotisserie chicken; Farmer’s Market salad; any two sides; half baguette; Brownie Bark. Orders can be phoned in for convenient grab-and-go takeout. They are in the midst of setting up a curbside pickup zone outside their restaurant with “no contact” pickup. A staffer with gloved hands will walk over to the customers in their vehicle and can put the food directly into their trunk or passenger side-seat to ensure no contact if requested.

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The Ordinarie’s lobster roll. Photo by Brian Addison.

The Ordinarie

210 The Promenade N.; 562-676-4261

Opening June 10. Wednesday through Sunday from 3 to 9 p.m.

Classic, quality American comfort food, The Ordinarie has become both a Downtown and citywide staple with its stellar bar program and creative but classic menu—and during the pandemic, became an essential cog in the World Central Kitchen’s undertaking of feeding thousands of seniors across the city.

“Chef Chelsea has created some delicious new dishes and our new cocktail menu includes some great historical cocktails,” said Jaime Caldwell. “We hope to expand these hours in the near future.”

For Brian Addison’s original review of The Ordinarie, click here. To look at The Ordinarie’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here

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The pepino margarita at Padre. Photo by Brian Addison.

Padre

525 E. Broadway; 562-612-4951

Opening June 12. Monday through Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday through Sunday: 11 a.m. to midnight

Guadalajara-based Chef Manuel Bañuelos has continually tried to push Padre’s menu toward the more elevated— and given he is the guy who once served up the area’s best torta ahogada at Balam in Lynwood (which is still open and still good), that makes sense.

Bañuelos creates witty twists like chicken tinga masala and pastor wings along with sticking to Taco Cart Tuesday staples.

For Brian Addison’s original of Padre in 2017, click here

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The ceviche at Panxa Cocina. Photo by Brian Addison.

Panxa Cocina

3937 E. Broadway; 562-433-7999

Opening June 10. Wednesday through Sunday: 3 to 9 p.m.

Chef Arthur Gonzalez’s ode to New Mexico has been sadly closed throughout the entirety of the pandemic, with Gonzalez focusing on his expanding restaurant empire in Colorado—the state, not the lagoon.

Patrons are sure to be excited to once again experiencing his food, from “Christmas” style enchiladas—where a red sauce and a Hatch green chile sauce are sliced with a bright, perfectly cooked sunnyside up egg atop astounding enchiladas—to his albondingas con spaetzle, Gonzalez’s ode to his heritages combining chunky pork meatballs, like those made by his abuelita with the creamy pasta dish of his German relatives.

To look at Panxa’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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The pulpo plate from Playa Amor. Photo by Brian Addison.

Playa Amor 

6527 E. Pacific Coast Highway; 562-430-2667

Sunday through Thursday: Noon to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: Noon to 9 p.m.

Chef Thomas Ortega closed all of his Amor Familia locations, including its two Long Beach locations—Playa Amor and Amorcito—when COVID hit. Shortly thereafter, Ortega announced he was reopening those two spots for delivery. But now that Playa has had a weekend of hosting dine-in customers, Ortega said his world has changed for the better.

“It is night and day comparing our weekend with dining-in versus delivery only,” Ortega said. “Sales are slowly improving and we’ll feel more confident as time moves forward and we can expand our options.”

To look at Playa Amor’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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A martini made at Portuguese Bend using their Smoke Bay Gin. Photo by Brian Addison.

Portuguese Bend Distillery

300 The Promenade N.; 562-435-4411

Daily: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Chef Luis Navarro, creative mastermind Brenda Rivera and distiller Simon Haxton opened Long Beach’s first distillery nearly a year ago and they don’t plan on going anywhere. With the recent release of their first batches of rum, their drink menu has expanded and so has their food, with explorations of Hawaiian barbecue, coconut shrimp and mac salad are paired with stellar tiki drinks.

To look at Portuguese Bend’s feature in Brian Addison’s Best Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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Your coffee never goes empty at any of Long Beach’s four Potholders. Photo by Brian Addison.

The Potholder Cafe

Multiple locations:3700 E. Broadway; 562-433-9305 – 310 W. Broadway; 562-432-6824 – 2246 N. Lakewood Blvd.; 562-494-9400 – 5008 Katella Ave. in Los Alamitos; 562-431-1165

Daily: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

With four locations—the O.G. location in Belmont Heights on Broadway—The Potholder has this cultural importance that is hard to compete with: With decades of experience and service, they’ve created a throng of followers who share “Eat at the Potholder” picture while on vacation. That’s how much folks love ’em.

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The Prospector

2400 E. 7th St.; 562-438-3839

Monday through Friday: 11 to 2 a.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 8 to 2 a.m.

“The hot dogs, tortilla chips, and chili is right over there if you’re hungry.”

Waiting for friends at the bar since we were doing dinner—every Monday, the fried chicken special is offered and it is, no joke, one of the best in the city if not the best, even next to Gus’s—this is what the bartender told me while I got a drink at The Prospector.

My adoration of this place is genuinely hard for me to put into words—and it’s a Long Beach institution with a history that is both rich and beautifully American. I wrote about that history nearly a decade ago and, sitting listening to the bartender jokingly tell patrons their Fireball shots pair well with their blue cheese salad—”I’m a sommelier when it comes to shot pairings,” he declared—I felt obligated to share that history here.

For Brian Addison’s profile on The Prospector, click here.

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An assortment of sausages from Rasselbock. Photo by Bjoern Risse.

Rasselbock Kitchen & Beer Garden

4020 Atlantic Ave.; 562-912-4949

Monday through Thursday: 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday through Sunday: Noon to 9 p.m.

Perhaps the largest reason folks (and especially parents) can rejoice about this particular reopening is the fact that we can access Rasselbock’s kid-friendly/beer-friendly/sun-friendly patio, providing parents and singletons alike with a bit of respite.

On top of this, owner Bjoern Risse is working on getting his other Bixby Knolls restaurant, Wood & Salt, ready for opening. We’ll have a pretzel while we wait.

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A delivered spread from Remix, a new Long Beach restaurant from Chef Ross Pangilinan. Photo by Brian Addison.

ReMix Kitchen Bar

3860 Worsham Ave., #330

Wednesday and Thursday: 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Sunday: 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Outside of Taco María, my meal at Mix Mix was the best I’ve had in Orange County.

So clearly I had to check out Chef Ross Pangilinan’s first Long Beach restaurant on its opening day—yup, they opened up during a pandemic, may the gods bless ‘em—and all I can say from this is that I hope it can stay around, especially with people able to experience his food the way it is intended to be served.

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Pork short ribs from Saint & Second.

Saint & Second

4828 E. 2nd St.; 562-433-4828

Monday through Thursday: 3 to 9 p.m.; Friday: 3 to 10 p.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Part of the Hofman Family of restaurants—Hof’s Hut, Lucille’s—Saint & Second used to house one of the most beloved Hof’s Hut before becoming a Lucille’s before becoming Saint & Second. The aim with the Saint & Second overhaul, through the site’s failed attempts at previously garnering a consistent following, is to appeal to the Shore’s more upscale counterparts, such as include Nick’s on 2nd.

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A tray of seafood from the Long Beach location of San Pedro Fish Market. Photo by Brian Addison.

San Pedro Fish Market

6550 Marina Dr.; 562-606-0090

Tuesday through Sunday: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

There is a cult-like love for the San Pedro Fish Market. Its original location in San Pedro has been the sight of perpetual lines of people with metal trays seeking heaps of shrimp, fish and lobster. Announcing their new Long Beach location nearly three years ago, the San Pedro Fish Market on Alamitos Bay opened just before the pandemic hit.

That didn’t stop owner Mike Ungaro’s massive heart from doing the right thing: He fed thousands of first responders day in and day out and is hopeful the community will pay it forward.

“We’ve lost a lot of seating and we have to recoup that somehow,” Ungaro said. “We’re working with the city to create a temporary, covered patio or tent space outside to make. We hope the people come through with support.”

Time to get your shrimp platter on.

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Purple potato taquitos from Seabirds. Photo by Brian Addison.

Seabirds Kitchen

975 E. Fourth St.; 562-317-5545

Daily: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Seabirds has a cult-like following and for good reason: The small shop off of Fourth Street, just a tad east of Alamitos, serves up some of the most quality vegan creations in the entire region, distinctly unique plates that are addictive and comforting.

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The Social List’s Impossible Burger is one of the best vegan burgers around.

The Social List’s Impossible Burger is one of the best vegan burgers around.

The Social List

2015 E. 4th St.; 562-433-5478

Opening June 15. 

Owner and Chef Luis Navarro attempted to keep this spot open through delivery service and a mini-market popup but eventually had to shut the entire space down, focusing on delivery options for his two Lola’s locations as well as Portuguese Bend Distillery in Downtown.

“We have an entirely new menu that is dynamite,” Navarro said. “We simply can’t wait to open one of Fourth Street’s staples back up, let some life come back and shine.”

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The mushroom and tofu soup from Sura Korean BBQ & Tofu House.

Sura Korean BBQ & Tofu House

621 Atlantic Ave; 562-495-7872

Sunday through Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

With an updated menu and plenty of vegan options—including, no joke, a stellar vegan shrimp Korean taco—Sura is one of Long Beach’s few Korean-centric spaces. With options like yuk gae jang—the shop’s stellar spicy beef soup—and vegan broth-based mushroom and tofu soup (along with a cold-noodle dish perfect for the heat), Sura is an underrated gem.

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Tantulūm

6272 E. Pacific Coast Highway #J; 562-431-1414

Tantulūm is a mini-wonder for the fact that, ironically nestled between the two corporate giants that are Nordstrom Rack and Acapulco, it offers its diners one of the most hidden’n’quiet spaces to kick back, complete with expansive views of the Alamitos harbor on a feel-likes-a-forgotten-island-hut feel that makes it one of the most unique dining spaces in the city.

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Ubuntu Café’s roasted pork loin.

Ubuntu Café

335 Nieto Ave.; 562-498-2021

Daily: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

One of Long Beach’s newest culinary additions, Ubuntu Café was only open for a handful of weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic, but they’ve managed to maintain a following through delivery and take-out. They are now officially open for diners, encouraging patrons to use their space as a temporary work office while they turn out Californian food that spans pistachio-filled croissants to omelets.

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Utopia in the East Village Arts District in Downtown Long Beach.

Utopia Fine Food & Fine Art

445 E. 1st St.; 562-432-6888

Monday through Thursday: 5 to 9:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: 5 to 10 p.m.

Utopia, from owner Kamran Assadi, have been in the East Village Arts District since 1999, moving into their third decade at the northwest corner of 1st Street and Linden Avenue in Downtown Long Beach. The multi-national menu, often finding appetizers like bruschetta next to entrees like curry, has remained a crowd-pleaser since opening.

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Vino e Cucina’s gnocchi and gorgonzola sauce. Photo by Brian Addison.

Vino e Cucina

4501 E. Carson St., #105;  562-421-0124

Tuesday through Sunday: 5 to 9 p.m.

Vino e Cucina is the type of place that lacks any sense of pretense. Bright yellow walls meet white tiles and various hung knick-knacks. It reminds me of a place my Grandpa Natalino and Mom would enjoy and, more importantly, one they would both cook at.

This East Long Beach staple—right by the airport and Long Beach City College—is straight-forward pasta at its best, all made in-house and fresh. You’ll find the giant tubes of rigatoni, almost reaching the size of larger cousin paccheri millerighe, tossed in any sauce you can imagine along with pillowy plates of gnocchi and other semolina wonders.

To look at Vine e Cucina’s feature in Brian Addison’s Underrated Restaurants in Long Beach list, click here.

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Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 16 nominations and two additional wins for Best Political Commentary for his work at KCET and Best Blog for Longbeachize, a section of the Long Beach Post. Brian currently serves as a columnist and editor for the Long Beach Post.
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